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Starter problem escalates. New starter kills new battery. WTF????

Chris Harrach

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Greetings. Here's the deal. Got new battery, car won't start. Starter is suspected to be the problem. Did all the checks at the connections, cleaned battery terminals, tested fender mounted starter relay, everything was as it should be: Power at proper points at proper times. Removed battery and got a new starter. Connected it, mounted it, and car started up ONCE. Let it run for 15 minutes, cut it off and tried starting it again. No go. This time multiple CLICKS at the fender relay, as opposed to the single CLICK I got originally, when my starter problem first appeared. Then I noticed that the battery had drained completely in a space of 25 minutes or so as I was checking my connections. I disconnected the battery, but I noticed that the Positive terminal was very warm to the touch. Not hot, but I know that's not a good sign. So did the new starter kill my battery or what? I checked all my connections and everything was the way it was supposed to be. What did I miss? Anyone have any clue as to what the f#$@ happened??? I'm totally stumped, not to mention frustrated.

Thanks in advance.
Chris H.
 



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RomeovilleIL

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Warm connector = short somewhere. Check your wiring.
 






Digital Dad

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Pinched wire or missing insulation and grounding out somewhere.
 






swshawaii

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Chris Harrach

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Double ditto. Unfortunately, often requires complete wiring REMOVAL from the vehicle for thorough inspection and testing.

Err..... I'm hoping your'e not refering to the ENTIRE wiring harness. If so I may as well get ready to sell it for parts or scrap it. Of course if its just all the cables and wires connecting the battery, starter, relay, etc. etc. then that was ny next step.
 






swshawaii

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You're correct, just the starter related wiring. Sounds like a bare cable shorting on another wire or the frame.
 






Chris Harrach

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You're correct, just the starter related wiring. Sounds like a bare cable shorting on another wire or the frame.

Whew!!! Thats a relief!!! You had me worried as hell there for a minute. I'll be pulling the starter and battery today and taking them to be tested and the battery charged. Wire/cable removal, inspection, replacement from all the relative starting components is the next order of the day:salute:
 






Chris Harrach

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Wires are now out

I went and pulled all the wires from the battery & relay all the way down to the starter. Although they'd seen better days, they wern't all that bad, just a few places on the negative cable were it grounds to the chassis & frame. Of cousse it would be foolish to put the old ones back now, so everything will be replaced. Once the battery is recharged and the starter is tested, I hope this will be the end of it. Cant think of anything else that caused this problem.
 






Digital Dad

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Usually it is the positive cable that makes that happen, as it is ok to "ground out" anywhere on the body or frame since it is grounded as well. So I would double check for bad spots on the positive side again, just so you get it done all at one time.
 






imp

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Wiring seems OK, batt. drained in 25 minutes indicates a HUGE power drain. Before you throw more money into it, I would check 2 things: starter itself: stuck in "on" position or armature mechanically locked-up, start contacts at starter fused on, solenoid on fender shorted to ground internally. imp
 






Chris Harrach

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Alternator was bad. as well.

New starter checked out OK. Bench tested twice to be sure, and battery has been recharged. Curiously, the guy at the parts place thought that the alternator may have been the reason why this whole series of events began, when I tried giving a jump start to a friend a week earlier. I went ahead and took the alternator off and had it tested, and it failed. Luckily, battery & alternator are covered under warrenty. so the replacements were free. Since they didn't have any battery cables in stock, I'll have to wait a day or two before I can replace them & put it all back together again.
 






Chris Harrach

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Problem solved.

New starter checked out OK. Bench tested twice to be sure, and battery has been recharged. Curiously, the guy at the parts place thought that the alternator may have been the reason why this whole series of events began, when I tried giving a jump start to a friend a week earlier. I went ahead and took the alternator off and had it tested, and it failed. Luckily, battery & alternator are covered under warrenty. so the replacements were free. Since they didn't have any battery cables in stock, I'll have to wait a day or two before I can replace them & put it all back together again.

I replaced the battery, starter, battery cables, and finally the alternator, and now the truck runs perfectly. From what I was told, the alternator failed, which caused the battery to fail, which in turn caused the starter to fail. Having less than perfect battery cables didn't help either. I'd planned on changing the cables a long time ago but never got around to it . This time I've got new cables (Motorcraft Negative off ebay, brand new for $29.00, a steal!!! & NAPA Positive for $56.00. I never realized how damn EXPENSIVE cables were!), so I won't have cable's to worry about. I plan on having the alternator checked regularly from now on. Many thanks to all the help & advice from everyone.:salute:

Have a wonderfull Christmas!

Chris.
 






Digital Dad

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Happy to hear you got to the bottom of the issue and got it going good again!
Those cables are loaded with copper, save it and turn it in for cash at your local recycling center.
 






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